At least 10 people were injured and dozens of homes destroyed after tornadoes hit Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas late Friday, officials and reports said.
In northern Texas near the border with Oklahoma, about 50 homes were damaged or destroyed, the Lamar County Sheriff’s Office said after a tornado touched down Friday afternoon.
“There have been 10 persons treated at the Paris Regional Medical Center, two critical, but stable,” it said in a statement posted on Facebook. “There are no fatalities at this time.”
Lamar County judge Brandon Bell had declared a disaster for the county, it added.
“There has been quite a bit of damage and some injuries,” Lamar County constable Travis Rhodes told CNN.
Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt said he was praying for Oklahomans affected by the tornadoes, which struck several counties.
Search and rescue teams and generators were headed to the area of Idabel, a city of about 7,000 in southeast Oklahoma, he tweeted.
“Storms hit in Bryan, Choctaw, and Le Flore counties, among others. Additional flash flooding in some areas,” he said.
The National Weather Service had issued tornado warnings for parts of Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas.
Tornadoes are a frequent and often devastating weather phenomenon in the United States, with the Great Plains states of Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas the hardest hit.
In December last year, dozens of devastating tornadoes ripped through five US states overnight, leaving at least 79 people dead in Kentucky — with fatalities also recorded in Tennessee, Arkansas, Missouri and Illinois.